In a nutshell
This study looked at the effectiveness of rituximab (Rituxan)-containing chemotherapy in the treatment of patients with B-cell lymphoma who are overweight. Researchers found that overweight patients treated with rituximab-containing treatment have improved outcomes.
B-cell lymphoma is a cancer of the immune system. It leads to abnormal cells in the immune system. Rituximab is a commonly used treatment for lymphoma.
Obesity is strongly linked to the development of many cancers. It is not known how weight may affect response to certain cancer treatments.
Methods & findings
6246 patients with aggressive B-cell lymphomas were included in this study. All patients received chemotherapies containing rituximab. Body mass index (BMI – a measure of weight in comparison to height) was measured in each patient. 2113 (34%) had a normal BMI (between 18.5 and 25 kg/m2). 2267 (36%) patients were overweight (BMI between 25 and 30 kg/m2). 1710 (27%) were classified as obese (BMI over 30 kg/m2) and 156 (3%) were underweight (BMI below 18.5 kg/m2).
Patients in the overweight group were 15% more likely to survive compared to normal weight patients. Patients in the obese group were 25% more likely to survive compared to those of normal weight. Patients who were underweight had similar survival as those of normal weight. Patients with a higher BMI were 16% less likely to be admitted to the hospital during treatment compared to normal weight patients.
The bottom line
The study concluded that an increased BMI was linked with better survival in patients with B-cell lymphoma treated with rituximab.
The fine print
The authors note that weight was measured at the beginning of the study but not throughout the research.
Published By :
Leukemia & lymphoma
Dec 03, 2018
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